INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – After a win in 2009, Helio Castroneves looked to join rarified company and become a four-time Indy 500 winner. However, after starting on the pole, a pit stop miscue took him out of the running and Castroneves finished 9th.
The race was instead dominated by another former winner, Dario Franchitti. Franchitti led a race-high 155 laps.
After multiple crashes during qualifying, fan-favorite Tony Kanaan started the race in last place. Kanaan worked his way through the field and was in position to compete for the win, however, he didn’t have enough fuel and was forced to pit on lap 196. Kanaan finished 11th.
Following Kanaan’s pit stop, Dan Wheldon took over second place and attempted to catch Franchitti. Both Franchitti and Wheldon were close on making it to the finish on fuel, so both drivers were forced to conserve while at the same time trying to win the race. Franchitti relied on his team to provide information as to how far ahead of Wheldon he was on the track.
Franchitti led Wheldon as they took the white flag. After the white flag was shown, Ryan Hunter-Reay ran out of fuel on the track between turns three and four.
As Hunter-Reay slowed, Mike Conway ran over the corner of Hunter-Reay’s car, sending Conway airborne. In a horrific-looking crash, Conway’s car shredded as it hit the outside catch fence. Conway was flown to the hospital with a broken leg as a result of the crash.
The resulting caution froze the field and the leaders took the warm-up lane to avoid the debris on the track. Franchitti made his way around to take the checkered flag under caution, giving the Scotsman his second Indy win. Wheldon was the runner-up for a second consecutive year.
After the race, both Franchitti and his wife, Ashley Judd were very emotional.
“This means so much. To come back after going away for a year, and I win the championship and the Indy 500,” Franchitti said. “Thank you to everybody at Team Target, and I’m damn near speechless right now.”